A sequel that’s faster, flashier and more bombastic than the original
In the past, The Bees were a uniformly hippy tribe. ‘Octopus’ finds them no less bearded, but looking further for their underwater paradise, and, on doo-woppish single ‘Who Cares What The Question Is’, going straight after psych-era Beatles with a side-dollop of reggae for good measure. ‘Love In The Harbour’ marries mellow country rock to the same influences, while Latin-flecked ‘The Ocularist’ (a person who fits false eyes, fact fans) makes the seafaring motif even more overt – its refrain of how it’s “good to get back to the sea” is the very definition of lush escapism. Better still is samba-mariachi confection ‘Left Foot Stepdown’, and best of all is ‘Listening Man’ – an transportive slice of sun-tinged lover’s rock.
Bands like this can stumble from trying to do many things simultaneously. On ‘Octopus’ The Bees find their groove and sound blissfully unaware whether anyone else is listening. You should, they’ve made their best album yet.
The sequel to Independence Day has been 20 years in the making, and it’s quite stupid but kinda fun
Minus Tom DeLonge, the pop-punk icons prove their worth on album seven
Mount returns both fearless and eccentric on bold new album
Bat For Lashes’ concept album about a wedding day tragedy is a spellbinding parable about relationship ideals